Click above for a high-res gallery of the Ford Focus RS

The 2009 Focus Rallye Sport has a price: £24,995 when it goes on sale in the UK in March. That will put you about £4,000 over a Focus ST3, but for that extra money you get a car that could be much closer to Ford's WRC competitor than it is to its ST3 sibling. The 300 horses and 325 ft-lbs is channeled through a six-speed manual to the front wheels, and a wider track joins beefier driveshafts, thicker anti-roll bars, tuned springs and uprated dampers.

The car comes with a bodykit that only an RS could wear, as well as things like heated door mirrors and windshield, xenon headlights, Recaros, and Ford's Easy Fill fueling system. Only a few options are available, the ritziest one being the Luxury Pack that will give you things like automatic climate control and rear parking sensors. Thankfully, based on how popular these cars are among the five-finger set, an alarm is also standard. You can check out the full release after the jump and the gallery of high-res photos below.

Related Gallery2009 Ford Focus RS (blue)


PRESS RELEASE

PRICES ANNOUNCED FOR 2009 FORD FOCUS RS

BRENTWOOD, Essex, 15 December, 2008 - Ford's fastest-ever European production car, the 2009 Focus RS, will be priced from £24,995 when it goes on sale in the UK in March.

The new Focus RS is the first Ford to wear the famous Rallye Sport badge since the first-generation Focus RS was launched seven years ago, and the 22nd since 1970.

RS denotes a distinctive blend of high performance, road-holding, refinement, safety and value for money, and reflects a proud tradition of successful motor sports involvement that continues to the present day.

Under the bonnet of the Ford Focus RS is a turbocharged 2.5-litre, five-cylinder Duratec petrol engine, with a confirmed 305PS and 440Nm peak torque. Features include unique camshafts and a revised cylinder head and gasket, intake and manifold system.

Front-wheel-driven through a six-speed transmission, the Focus RS accelerates from 0-62mph in under six seconds and has a targeted top speed of over 160mph.

A class-leading balance of traction, sports handling and performance is achieved through the combination of a Quaife Automatic Torque Biasing limited-slip differential and innovative RevoKnuckle front-suspension system.

These features are complemented by a wider track, enhanced drive-shafts and rear anti-roll bar, revised springs and dampers and retuned steering, while a specially developed version of Ford's Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) with Traction Assist (TA) provides added assurance.

Uprated disc brakes – 336mm ventilated front and 300mm rear – combine with an anti-lock braking system (ABS), electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and Emergency Brake Assist (EBA) to supply a reassuringly high degree of stopping power.

Taking its place as the top-of-the-range Focus, the RS will be immediately distinguishable on the road, with its unique bonnet, front bumper and side skirts. Also unique to the model are its 19-inch alloy wheels, shod with 235/35 tyres.

The rear twin-bladed spoiler - the continuation of an RS tradition – and the power/heated door mirrors are also distinctive, with their high-gloss black finish.

Xenon headlights with automatic levelling and jet-wash are provided, with LED lights at the rear. Dual chrome tailpipes add a further sporting dash.

A Quickclear heated windscreen is fitted, and privacy glass for the rear. A Ford Easy Fill fuelling system removes any risk of costly mis-fuelling errors at the pump.

The driver and front passenger benefit from unique Recaro sports seats, with side bolsters trimmed to match the colour of the car – green for Ultimate Green models, blue for those finished in Performance Blue or Frozen White. Rear passengers are comfortably accommodated in a sculpted Recaro-style seat.

A manual air-conditioning system is provided, and in-car entertainment in the form of a Sony radio and six-disc CD player with DAB. A Ford Power button allows for keyless engine ignition, and a Thatcham Category 1 alarm is standard.

A £750 Luxury Pack includes the options of Dual-Zone Electronic Automatic Temperature Control (DEATC) air-conditioning; automatic headlights; rain-sensor wipers; auto-dim rear-view mirror; rear parking-distance sensors; tyre deflation-detection; and a Ford Key-Free system. The £1,500 version of the Luxury Pack adds in a Touchscreen DVD Navigation System, with seven-inch touch-screen.

Other optional extras include partially leather-trimmed seats at £500 and, for £200, Bluetooth® hands-free phone connectivity and USB port. Specifying a metallic version of the Performance Blue paintwork costs £395, while a Tri-Coat Metallic Ultimate Green finish carries a £695 price tag.

The standard price of the flagship Focus RS compares with £20,408 for the ST3, the existing top-of-the-range Focus.